Weekend Distance

Photo info: Apple iPhone 12 mini, 4.2mm, f/1.6, 1/200 sec, ISO32
“Under the Tracks” Cedar Park, 2021

The marathon training schedule I am following suggested a 7-mile “long run” this weekend, but I felt like I should up the mileage from last week’s distance so I went for a 14-mile run along Brushy Creek Regional Trail. I felt really good, especially because at about the halfway point (where I turn around and head home), there’s a water fountain and bathroom. What a huge difference that made!

Anyways, it was only 49° F when I started so I wore my Uniqlo leggings on and my old thrift-store Adidas pullover. With that combo, I am pretty comfortable running in the 50-60 degree range. Yay.

Regarding the training schedule, I think I will follow the schedule for rest days, but will use the recommended distances as a guideline. We’ll see how that goes. 😄

Photo info: Apple iPhone 12 mini, 4.2mm, f/1.6, 1/1700 sec, ISO32
“Sunrise” Cedar Park, 2021

If you are on Strava, let’s connect so that we can cheer each other on!

Birthday Run and Katsu Curry Dinner

Photo info: Apple iPhone 12 mini, 4.2mm, f/1.6, 1/1900 sec, ISO32
“Critter Tracks” Cedar Park, 2021

Today happens to be my birthday, and to celebrate, I took the day off from work. 😄 So with time on my hands, I was wondering what to do… maybe go for a ride on my motorcycle? Maybe go for a long bicycle ride? But after all, I decided to go running. I’ve discovered that I really love it!

I ended up running on Brushy Creek Regional Trail and I felt so good that I completed my half-marathon challenge on Strava. It’s a really good feeling to know that at 53, I can still increase my distances and get stronger. I hope I can stay healthy for a good long time!

I admit that part of my motivation for running so far today was because I knew that I was going to feast on pork katsu curry for dinner. Normally I request oyakodon for my birthday dinner but I’ve been craving curry for a while now!

Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 27mm, f/2.8, 1/40 sec, ISO800
“Katsu Curry” Cedar Park, 2021

All in all, I had a very nice birthday. I’m looking forward to my next year!

Photo info: Apple iPhone 12 mini, 2.71mm, f/2.2, 1/900 sec, ISO25
“Let’s Run” Cedar Park, 2021

‘Tis the Season

Photo info: Apple iPhone 12 mini, 4.2mm, f/1.6, 1/120 sec, ISO80
“Jack” Cedar Park, 2021

Some days, I feel like I could just run forever and today was one of those days. Maybe it was because I decided to run on streets I haven’t run before, but I felt so good and actually ran faster than I have in a long time. I don’t know if it was the proverbial runner’s high, but it was magical!

And part of what it made it so fun was that I saw a lot of really cool Halloween decorations. There was one house that had a huge skeleton with fire in its ribcage, but I didn’t take a photo because they were still setting it up. Next time!

Photo info: Apple iPhone 12 mini, 4.2mm, f/1.6, 1/120 sec, ISO64
“RIP” Cedar Park, 2021

If you are on Strava, let’s connect so that we can cheer each other on!

Running Farther

Photo info: Apple iPhone 12 mini, 4.2mm, f/1.6, 1/2100 sec, ISO32
“Sunrise Clouds” Cedar Park, 2021

This morning I went for an early run, intent on completing another half-marathon distance. Last week’s run was difficult due to the fact that it was a hotter part of the day, and also because I didn’t have any water until the run was complete. That’s what happens with spontaneous exercise I guess. 😋

This time around I did a bit of research beforehand and planned a route that would bring me back home a few times for hydration. It’s basically a four-mile loop, run three times, which would provide water breaks at the 4 and 8-mile marks (I put a big Nalgene on the porch). I also was starting out at 7:30 am when the temperature was a comfortable 79°F / 26°C.

As it turns out, this plan was a life-saver because at about mile 3, last night’s ramen decided to make it’s lingering presence known and a bathroom break was in order. That might be TMI, but it’s actually good to know for the future.

During the break, I drank about 300 ml of water and I also grabbed my wireless headphones before heading out for the second leg of the run. I usually run without headphones, but I was grateful to have some tunes in my ears for the longer distance. Another good thing to keep in mind for the upcoming Austin Marathon.

The second loop was excellent, and I felt really good. There are two hills on the route and I felt strong tackling them.

At the 8-mile break, I drank another 300 ml of water before starting the third loop. After running about 10 minutes I decided to take off my shirt and run “American-style”, as my wife calls it. 😂 But my shirt at that point was drenched with sweat and kind of heavy to carry in my hand so I looped back home to drop it off by my water, then set out again on the route. That little detour back home added a couple of miles which meant that I didn’t have to run the full third-leg of the route.

However, I decided to just go for it and figured that I could make a shorter loop if I felt like it and still complete the half-marathon. At this point in the run (10 miles), my legs were losing energy, but I felt no pain in my joints (I was hurting last week!) and I wasn’t winded at all, nor was I sweating a whole lot. Plus, running “American-style” is so liberating!

I ended up completing the full leg, so my total distance was an even 16 miles – my longest run ever! I’m pretty proud of that.

I’ve been registered for the Austin Marathon for a couple years now (it has been cancelled two years because of COVID-19) and am hoping that things become safe enough by February where I can run in it. It’s still up in the air, and if they decide to hold the event, I still might not do it because I don’t want to be around so many people. But we’ll see! That being said, I would like to run my own 26.2 miler well before February rolls around. I honestly don’t care too much about the event, but I do care about the distance.

If you are on Strava, let’s connect so that we can cheer each other on!

Morning Ride to the Sculpture Garden

Photo info: FUJIFILM X100T, 23mm, f/3.2, 1/1600 sec, ISO200
“Gotcha Bird with Fish” Cedar Park, 2021

Today I woke up early and went for a 7:30 a.m. bicycle ride to check out the Sculpture Garden at the Cedar Park Recreation Center. They say it’s not about the destination, but the journey… but sometimes it’s really both! The sculptures on display at this time are really cool, and I especially liked the piece in the photo above entitled “Gotcha Bird with Fish” by Siri Dehipitiya. Isn’t it awesome?!

Speaking of birds, the “journey” over to the sculpture garden took me past the small ponds adjacent to the park, and I spotted a beautiful Great Egret just chilin’ in the morning sun. Super cool.

Photo info: FUJIFILM X100T, 23mm, f/6.4, 1/1800 sec, ISO200
“Great Egret” Cedar Park, 2021

Although it was only about 41°F / 5°C, the ride was super fun and relaxing because of the light traffic (being an early Sunday morning). I don’t usually ride this early but I think I should make it a habit. It’s a special way to start the weekend day.

Photo info: FUJIFILM X100T, 23mm, f/4.5, 1/600 sec, ISO200
“Morning Mango” Cedar Park, 2021

Please take a look at this morning’s ride if you have some free time: